OWATONNA — Recently, as part of the Junior Achievement (JA) Biz Town Program’s Philanthropy lesson at the Owatonna Middle School (OMS), sixth grade students had the opportunity to make four $100 donations to local charities of their choice. Students were given the lesson in Philanthropy by representatives of the Owatonna Foundation which provided the $400 for the students to donate. “We were thrilled to have this opportunity to share the spirit of philanthropy with the Middle School students. By helping to make them aware of the personal satisfaction and positive power of giving at a young age we are hopeful that this spirit of philanthropy will carry forward as they become engaged citizens of our community when they reach adulthood.” said Owatonna Foundation President, Betsy Lindgren.

Following the philanthropy lesson the students could choose from four different charities to make their donation to. Members of the OMS Vikings Team choose the Steele County Food Shelf. The OMS Gophers, Mustangs and Thunder Teams all choose the “We All Play” Project which is fundraising for a fully accessible playground and Miracle Ball Field in Owatonna. “All of us at the Foundation want to thank the teachers and OMS administration for their help and support in having us bring this important lesson to their students. A special thank you also goes to Laura Heyne and Denise Milstead of the Junior Achievement Program who worked with us to facilitate the lesson.” said Foundation Executive Director, Laura Resler. JA is the world’s largest organization dedicated to educating students about financial literacy, college and career readiness, and entrepreneurship through experiential, hands on programs. In 2016-2017 JA impacted 5,061 Owatonna students with 34,698 program hours.

The Owatonna Foundation, which is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, was established in 1958 with the goal of improving the quality of life for present and future generations of Owatonna residents. Since then, the Owatonna Foundation has invested more than $11.8 million dollars in grants for capital projects to support Owatonna projects in the areas of community, arts, recreation, and education, and annually awards $30,000 in scholarships for both traditional and non-traditional students.

For more information about the Owatonna Foundation, please visit their website at: www.owatonnafoundation.org, or call our office at 455-2995.

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